You may be excited about the idea to extend your home or alter the design to suit the needs of your family. With careful thought and adequate planning, you can get the desired result. However, there is so much you need to consider before you start shopping for renovation materials and furniture. Here is a guide to planning the project better.
Why do you want the extension?
One of the questions you must evaluate is why you need the extension. Even when you engage an architect, that is the first question they will ask you. There are various reasons to extend your home or alter its design, including:
- Change the design of the building to suit your dream property.
- Add value to the property.
- Get additional space for your growing family.
- Maximize the space for long-term enjoyment.
- The property is in a good location, and you don’t want to move.
- You cannot afford to buy another property etc.
Making alterations to your current home is more cost-effective than moving out or buying another property. Thankfully, with reliable architectural services from detailed planning, you can design your current home in a way that works for you and suits your lifestyle.
Consider the cost
Budgeting is essential to come up with a design you can afford and something that can actually be delivered. If you know how much you plan to spend from the beginning, a professional architect will know how to provide the best value out of the project. Also, there is no way an architect will know if your project is realistic unless you tell them what your budget is. Keep in mind that home extensions and alterations have no zero VAT charged on building materials, builder’s fees, and professional fees.
The time the project will take
Think about the time the project will take and make the necessary arrangements for your family. Consider the time for survey and design before planning, the planning process, working drawings and submitting to the local authorities for approval, tendering the project, and mobilizing a contractor to start. The project may be further delayed if there are additional requirements with planning permission and building control approval. Plan accordingly so that the work begins on time and ends on time. Ideally, you want the project to take place during summer or spring.
Think about the alterations or extensions you want to make. Will it impact the utility services of the property? Do you need to move the water, electricity, or gas meters? Remember that there is also a drainage system on the property. If it is shared with your neighbors, you have to involve them and the local authorities. An experienced architect can help you maneuver such circumstances.
When planning a house extension, you also have to think about the shared amenities with your neighbors and how they impact the project. Some questions to evaluate include:
- Do you share a wall?
- Who owns the boundary wall?
- Will there be problems with overlooking?
- Will your addition overshadow their garden?
- Are there any trees interfering with the project?
- Whose trees are they, and are they protected?
- Will the neighbor complain about their right to light?
Evaluating these questions can help you avoid problems with your neighbors in the future. You might need to explain the project to them and let them offload any concerns they have so that you find an amicable solution.
The whole project
Last but not least, think about the whole project and how it impacts the rest of the property. While the house is being altered, think about other home improvements you have desired so that you complete the whole project simultaneously, saving time and resources.